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Fitness, Motivation, Results - The Next Step

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First, let me say Thank you to our many members and guests that have been following my "Frugal Fitness" series. Even if you haven't been following my personal workout routines that I shared with you a couple weeks ago, I hope you've been able to make a few changes to your daily routine to squeeze in a little more exercise.

Did you notice that I never really mentioned anything about food or diet in the first couple of weeks? It has been said that it takes 21 days to develop (or break!) a habit. If you can stick with something for 21 days, chances are, it will become part of your daily routine permanently.
It is my personal belief that if you try to change too many things in your life at once, you have less of chance of succeeding, because it's easier to become discouraged, overwhelmed and let's face it, Change is never easy.

I hope if you've been using my workouts (or your own!) that you're seeing physical and emotional changes within yourself. Perhaps your pants buckle a little easier, perhaps you're less stressed during the day, perhaps you sleep through the night instead of waking up every few hours. Now.. It's time to throw something else into the mix- Nutrition!

Let me preface this with a statement... I DON'T DIET. I don't believe in diets. I don't believe in following a diet system for anything but support from others in the same boat as you.

What I DO believe is the following:

  1. Fat makes you fat.
  2. Sugar Makes you fat.
  3. Skipping Meals makes you fat.

First, it's obvious that consuming large amounts of fatty foods will inevitably make you fat; No one goes on a Double Whopper with Supersize fries Diet, clearly, that's going to result in BULGE.
What may be considerably less obvious to you is that Sugar also makes you fat. When your body needs energy, it converts the easiest source of energy first. If you consume sugar (sugary products) that becomes your "energy" source. In addition, there's another reason that sugar causes weight gain; when the pancreas is producing insulin (the hormone that is responsible for processing the sugar in your body), it cannot produce another hormone called glucagon, which is the hormone that tells your body to release and burn fat stores for energy.
Unfortunately this means that not only is your body not burning the energy that is consumed but it is also storing it for later use, aka love handles, rolls, double chins, etc.[*] Last but certainly not least - I believe skipping meals makes you fat .. . Really! If you skip breakfast, by lunchtime you're 85% more likely to gorge yourself, and also more likely to consume items that are less than healthy.
In order for your body to properly burn calories throughout the day, your blood sugar levels must be kept at an even keel. On average, I eat 6 meals a day. I'm not talking about six 5-course meals that you'd munch while visiting a fancy Gordan Ramsey restaurant.

What I mean is that throughout the day, I eat several small meals that contain Complex Carbohydrates (Fruits or Leafy Green Veggies) as well as Protein.

When I want to lose weight quickly I remove the following items from my diet completely:

  • White Flour & White Flour Products (yes, that means bread/cakes/pies/pastries/etc)
  • Sugar - White/Brown/Corn Syrup/Sucralose/
  • Fake Sugar - Aspartame (Nutrasweet = POISON), Splenda, Saccharin, etc

Now, keep in mind in order to remove those 3 ingredients from your diet, you cease eating ANYTHING that contains them. That means, no pasta, no soda (diet or otherwise), no gatorade/kool-aid/etc)

What to Eat:

  • Fruits (any Kind)
  • Vegetables of any kind- stir fried/grilled/raw/baked/steamed/etc
  • Meats- Pork, Beef, Chicken, Turkey, Wild Game, etc. (Mostly grilled, never Fried).
  • Legumes - if you like

I have a tendency to cut out starches when I want to lose weight rapidly. I look at this way, when you raise a pig, what do you use to Fatten it quickly? Corn and Potatoes- 2 relatively high starch foods that convert to sugars rapidly in the body.

Liss Favorite Fat Loss Rules:

# 1. Never eat after 7 pm, ever. You're body will still be digesting when you go to bed and you'll end up storing more fat rather than burning it off.

#2. Consume Less Calories than your body burns daily.[*] If you consume approximately 500 calories per day LESS than what your body normally Burns, you will lose fat.

#3. Throw out your Scale. Seriously! Instead, use a fabric tape measure and measure your inch loss progress rather than your weight loss. For example, in my first week of working out I lost 13 inches off my body, but my scale said I GAINED 2 pounds.
I literally went down dress sizes, yet the scale said I gained weight. I was furious, frustrated and then it occurred to me that the stupid scale is unable to distinguish between the amount of fat and muscle that I have. While I clearly lost fat, I also gained muscle and a seriously trimmer body.

Here's something that I've found to be helpful... put on a bathing suit, (shut the curtains first if you have too!), take a fabric measuring tape and measure the following areas of your body:
  • Ankle
  • Calves
  • Thigh
  • Buttocks
  • Hips
  • Waist
  • Bust
  • Chest (Under the bustline!)
  • Shoulders - (you might need an extra hand for this one)
  • Wrist
  • Forearm
  • Upper-Arm
  • Neck

Add the Total Inches: !

Next week, instead of getting on the scale, measure the total inches again and you'll see major progress, Like I said, My First full week of workouts changed my entire body by 13 inches.

If you really want to chart your progress and SEE the difference, you can take photo shots each week to show your progress.

Download Free Measurement Chart

Fat Loss #4 - Weight Training is NECESSARY to Lose Fat Permanently

While it's true that you will lose weight doing Cardio, you lose equal amounts of fat and muscle, which in turns lowers your metabolism. The more muscle you have in your body, the more calories you burn (even while sitting!).

Fat Loss Secret - If you're trying to get a Bikini ready body in 2 weeks or less -Exercise FIRST thing every morning for 20 minutes on an empty stomach.
This works wonderfully, let me explain how...throughout the night while you're sleeping your body is depleting its Glycogen reserves, so when you jump up in the morning and immediately start exercising, your body is forced to burn Fats for the fuel.
It also jumpstarts your fat burning abilities through the rest of the day. I prefer to do my weight-training workout first thing in the morning.
Seriously, 20 minutes is all it takes to see considerable results in less than 2 weeks.


When I wrote this blog post 10 years ago, I strongly believed that eating smaller meals throughout the day was the way to go, I had great success with it... But what I didn't realize was that I was actually intermittent fasting.

I ALWAYS stopped eating anything by 7 pm and didn't start eating before 9 am. Now well within my 40's, I intentionally follow an intermittent fasting schedule of 16/8, meaning I fast 16 hours and have an eating "window" of 8 hours in which I follow the no junk carbs rules I've outlined above.

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  1. brchbell's Avatar
    Well I'm not losing weight but I am losing inches around my waist line! I was unaware until I put on a dress Sunday that ties at the sides and I had to undo the ties and retie them much tighter because I had lost a good 2 inches around the middle! It was a very pleasant surprise! I'd still like to lose another 20 pounds but if I can lose my steroid stomach I'd be tickled pink!

    I only use whole grains for my family. I make my own "white" flour by grinding oat groats, brown rice and barley together. No one knew it wasn't white flour for the 1st six months. We all had a really good laugh when I got caught making the flour up!
  2. fosterfamily5's Avatar
    Wow, I swear liss you are just e plethra of information. (can't spell but you get the gist).

    I've been reading and doing my own thing along with you.
    You keep me motivated. Thank you!!

    Thanks for all of the information. I'm going to try to do the first thing in the morning thingy. Ugh, that means getting up earlier....blech! but I'll try it for a while and see how it goes.
  3. angiem's Avatar
    Great article....I get really frustrated and want to give up when the scale doesn't respond the way I want!
  4. ContentedQueen's Avatar
    I love how you are so practical in everything! Lol... This really is a great article, though, Liss. You have given me some info I never knew before. I am overweight, and I also have CMT. (Charco, Marie, Tooth disease) it is a neourilogical disease that destroys nerve endings, thus causing muscle tissue to die. If having more muscle burns more calories, then I'm doomed, because mine are dying. Lol. But you have given much good info, that even if I can't get skinny, I can still be healthier. Thanks!
  5. Purple4d's Avatar
    All this information is gonna help get my daughter in shapers I am gonna do it w/her.
  6. Irishcolleen's Avatar
    I have 3 herniated discs in my back. Exercise is almost impossible for me, with the exception of walking for brief periods. Any suggestions?
  7. cece907's Avatar
    Slenda??? Didn't know it's bad man
  8. Liss's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Irishcolleen
    I have 3 herniated discs in my back. Exercise is almost impossible for me, with the exception of walking for brief periods. Any suggestions?
    do you have access to a pool (indoor?)? Pools are fantastic for taking the pressure off your back while working your muscles and helping burn calories. Just make sure you have someone near by who can help you get in and out!

    You might want to look into a anti-inflammation diet, it will help reduce the swellings and pain & allow you to be a little bit more active.
  9. smalltowngirlwy's Avatar
    It is so hard for me to get out of bed every morning, but this gives me motivation.
  10. cactusrosenaz's Avatar
    I also have a lot of problems with my lower back and pain issues. Do you have any gentle exercises similar to yoga that would be helpful in toning and core-strengthening?
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